Know Thy Enemy – Might be closer than you think!

Posted: November 2, 2014 by Tony Hardy in Combat Mindset, Philosophy of Survival

Another week in Africa and many more lessons for those interested in protecting themselves and those near and dear to them…

Two CCTV type videos have prompted this post, both from different situations, yet, both connected… and sadly, both examples showed situations that could have been avoided… in any combat system the phrase “the way you train is the way you react” can often be heard echoing around the training space… many times it falls on deaf ears, until that one day when the students asks themselves how they would have reacted… sometimes.. if they are honest with themselves they may re-look at how seriously they take their time in class.. other times the student can answer with an affirmative outcome… the difference can be seen in the training room… those that put themselves into the scenario and react as if the training knife or gun is real are the ones preparing for success!

The CCTV footage was posted online, and as different as they may have been from each other, the lessons are the same…

The first lesson: Pass your interview!

The “interview” is the pre-situation phase where the attacker/mugger/etc selects his target, this can happen at a distance (e.g. strike, rob and run or purse snatching), or, up close (bully/paedophile/rapist/etc), arguably, if it is a close up interview this means that you have already failed the first interview and are now in the second interview and the warning bells should be loud and clear!

So, how do you pass the first interview?
Firstly be vigilant… situational awareness is the key element!
Many people are very aware when driving their car, looking out for other vehicles, dangerous driving, pedestrians, motor bikes, etc… but that awareness disappears when they stop driving… why? the purpose behind the mind-set is to keep one safe…
I am not advocating a state of perpetual expectation, this would eventually lead to negative mental state, I am suggesting a positive, confident state of awareness that lead to a survivor or success mentality, this in itself, apart from the very real benefit of identifying possible threats, will also affect your body language and the appearance of being alert and ready, and this is how you pass the first interview, by not appearing to be a victim!


The second lesson: Respond immediately!

The first time to react is right away!
Do not wait for a “better” moment to present itself as any subsequent time will probably be to the attackers advantage as they have initiated the scenario and are already one step ahead of you!
And linked to this lesson is the issue of denial… Many victims state that when things started unfolding (before the actual attack/robbery/abuse/etc) they couldn’t believe it was happening to them, classic denial response, even during an event, while it was actually happening to them, they still maintained a state of disbelief and denial!

The fastest route out of this trap is ACTION!
The first action is to make the decision, then go for it!
At this point how you have prepared for this moment will determine how well you execute, remember, the way you train is the way you react, this applies through all possible phases, awareness, avoidance, escape or engaging!


Be aware, be safe!



  1. Robin Wasserman says:

    very cool.

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